The La Porte Jaycees in partnership with Bethany Lutheran Church recently awarded three community organizations as well as other community events with donations totaling more $23,000 from the proceeds raised during their Fourth of July Save A Life Benefit Concert held at the La Porte County Fairgrounds. Bethany Church and the Jaycees have a long history of working together to have a positive impact on the community.
“This all started with a conversation between us and the Jaycees," said Bethany Lutheran Church Pastor, Dennis Meyer. “We’ve partnered together with the Jaycees quite a bit and we have a good history working with their organization. The process was two-fold. We worked with Bob and Matt Magnuson from La Porte Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM and said why don’t we do a Jeep Raffle so they donated the 2015 Jeep Wrangler."
“From there things grew into the benefit concert featuring the Henningsens," said Meyer. “La Porte Mayor Blair Milo worked with us to organize the event and that was a great help. We decided to bring in the Henningsens because they’re such quality people. They’ve played the Grand Ole Opry and they’re just farmers from Illinois. It was really exciting to get them here. The concert outgrowth was really great. We tried hard to create a ‘Festival’-type atmosphere and I think we succeeded."
Among those to receive donations on behalf of the Jaycees and Bethany Church were the La Porte County Sheriff’s Department K9 Program, $5,000; the La Porte City Police DARE Program, $4,000; and the Frontline Foundation which received $4,000.
“We wanted to support the Sheriff’s Department K9 Program because drug and suicide prevention is so important to us," Meyer said. “The same can be said of the DARE Program which was just recently brought back into the schools. The third organization to receive a donation was Frontline Foundation. Amber Hicks, and their organization is really interesting. They’ve done great work in Porter County and we’ve kept that conversation going. We couldn’t be more excited to have them here."
“We really wanted to get the community involved," Meyer said. “We’ve got one of the best 4th of July celebrations around and we wanted to build off of that. It’s been extremely exciting and good for La Porte."
The Benefit Concert would not have been possible without the involvement and great sponsorship from organizations and businesses such as Garwood Orchard, LaPorte Savings & Horizon Banks, General Insurance, NLKJ Law Firm, the Bethany Foundation, Tom Dermody, NIPSCO, Larson Danielson, and Buffalo Wild Wings.